Southeast Missouri State Redhawks (1-3, 0-2 OVC)
at Tennessee State Tigers (1-3, 0-0 OVC)
Saturday, Oct. 3
Series Record: Southeast Missouri leads 9-8
Last Meeting: Southeast Missouri won 27-20 in OT (10/25/08)
Tony Samuel at Southeast Missouri: 12-26 (4 yrs.)
Tony Samuel Overall: 46-83 (11 yrs.)
James Webster at Tennessee State: 22-27 (5 yrs.)
James Webster Overall: same
Southeast Missouri Last Week: L, 29-22 at UT Martin
Tennessee State Last Week: L, 31-12 vs. #25 Florida A&M (in Atlanta)
GAME NOTES: Southeast Missouri State and Tennessee State are each searching for their first OVC victories of the season. Southeast Missouri is 0-2 after losses to Eastern Illinois and UT Martin while Tennessee State has yet to play a Conference game this year. The two teams have played 17 times previously with SEMO holding a 9-8 advantage. Last year the teams (playing for the first time since 2006) played a close game with the Redhawks coming out on top 27-20 in overtime. TSU, ranked No. 19 at the time, led 17-3 with 31 seconds left in the third quarter before Southeast battled back. A Timmy Hollman touchdown reception with 4:42 to play tied the game at 17. However, it looked like the Tigers were going to pull out the win when Eric Benson nailed an 18-yard field goal with 29 seconds to play. But a return to the 43-yard line gave Southeast a chance, and the Redhawks hit a 37-yard field goal as time expired to force overtime. In the extra period quarterback Matt Scheible ran in a score from five yards out (his only offensive play of the game) and the Southeast defense held TSU on four downs to win the game.
SCOUTING SOUTHEAST MISSOURI: Southeast Missouri went on the road and lost 29-22 at UT Martin on Saturday. The Redhawks struck first, scoring on a 15-yard pass from Matt Scheible to Miles Edwards. The touchdown was the 11th of Edwards' career moving him into ninth on the Southeast all-time list. But the Skyhawks would score three times in the second quarter to lead 21-6 at the break. A Doug Spada field goal and Mike Jones touchdown pulled the team to within six points (21-15) with 13:55 to play. The teams then traded touchdowns before Southeast got the ball back down seven with 38 seconds to play. But Scheible would be intercepted by Aaron High to end the game with nine seconds to play. Jones carried the ball 15 times for 101 yards (6.7/carry), becoming the first Redhawk to hit the 100-yard plateau this season. Scheible completed 24-of-38 passes for 199 yards. Bryan Blanfort was named OVC Defensive Player of the Week after netting a career-high 14 tackles, forcing a fumble and registering a pass break-up. His forced fumble led to the team's early fourth quarter touchdown. Spada made a career-long 53-yard field goal on the night and averaged 39.8 yards/punt, including a long of 51. He has had a punt of 50 or more yards in three straight games.
SCOUTING TENNESSEE STATE: Tennessee State played its third consecutive game away from home on Saturday, taking on No. 25 Florida A&M in the Atlanta Classic in front of 51,950 at the Georgia Dome. The defenses were pitted evenly early as A&M managed only a field goal in the first quarter before TSU took a second quarter led on a Preston Brown nine-yard touchdown run. After a Rattler score, Calvin McNairl punched the ball in from a yard out and TSU led 12-10 at the half. Florida A&M scored once in the third to go on top for good and then added two fourth quarter scores to pad their lead. McNairl led the rushing attack, netting 82 yards while Brown added 75 as the team netted 167 on the ground. Returning to action for the first time since suffering an injury the season opener against Alabama A&M, Dominic Grooms completed 9-of-16 passes for 89 yards. John Jones led the team with eight tackles, 2.5 of which were for loss.